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Samsung pushes aggressive takeovers for new biz

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Published : 2014-08-20 10:49
Updated : 2014-08-20 10:49

South Korea's tech giant Samsung Electronics Co. has acquired 10 companies since last year at home and abroad, industry data showed Wednesday, apparently in line with the firm's efforts to expand its business portfolio amid the slowing smartphone sector.

The world's No. 1 smartphone maker purchased stakes in firms from various sectors encompassing health care, solid state drive software and video streaming, successfully clinching 21 merger and acquisition (M&A) deals since 2007, the data showed.

Industry watchers said Samsung's takeover bids especially jumped over recent months as the saturated smartphone industry has emerged as a major drag on the company's long-term profitability.

The rise of Chinese firms, which have been expanding their presence in the global tech market, is also cited as a reason for Samsung's latest strive to take over tech companies around the world, they added.

The company's second-quarter net profit plunged 19.5 percent to reach 6.25 trillion won (US$6.14 billion). Samsung said operating profit of its IT and mobile business division, its main revenue source, fell 29.6 percent on-year to 4.42 trillion won over the cited period.

Accordingly, most of Samsung's latest takeover deals are aimed at non-handset areas. In January 2013, the tech firm bought U.S.-based medical device maker NeuroLogica Corp. Samsung had earlier bought a 43.5 percent stake in Medison, a major local health care firm, in 2011.

In a bid to beef up its display business, Samsung bought a 3 percent stake in Japan's Sharp Corp. in March 2013 for a stable supply of liquid crystal display panels and also took over U.S.-based multi-screen platform developer MOVL the following month. 

Samsung also invested in Novaled, a Germany-based firm that holds a handful of key patents related to the organic light emitting diode sector, in September 2013.

The South Korean firm's purchase rally also continued this year, taking over U.S.-based SELBY, an application developer, in May, followed by SmartThings, which specializes in the Internet of Things (IoT) industry.

The IoT refers to a computing concept in which all physical objects are connected to the Internet and are able to identify themselves to other devices and exchange related data for improved efficiency and convenience.

On Tuesday, Samsung said it has taken over Quietside, a U.S.-based retailer for air-conditioning products, in a bid to make inroads into the North American market and tap new businesses such as smart home solutions. (Yonhap)

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